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Corbyn slams Tories’ ‘living wage’ failure

Those on the rate to be £900 poorer in 2020

TORY failure on the economy will leave full-time workers on the government’s con-trick national living wage (NLW) £900 worse off in 2020, Jeremy Corbyn warned yesterday.

Speaking in Glasgow, the Labour leader said the projected rate of the NLW three years from now had been cut in last week’s Budget to £8.56, down from £8.75 in the previous Budget in March.

This falls short of the £9 first promised by the Tories when the policy was announced in 2015.

“The Conservative government in Westminster promised prosperity and economic stability, but, as last week’s Budget showed, they have failed utterly,” said Mr Corbyn.

“They are simply propping up a system rigged for the few that delivers falling wages, falling growth and falling productivity, falling living standards for the many and astronomical wealth for the very few.”

Labour has pledged to establish a real living wage of at least £10 per hour by 2020, which would make workers £3,000 better off.

Mr Corbyn was speaking alongside new Scottish Labour Party leader Richard Leonard, whom he praised for his “bold and radical agenda.”

He said: “With a radical Labour government in Westminster and Richard Leonard leading a radical Labour government in Holyrood, we would have an unprecedented opportunity for real change.”

This would mean the chance to deliver better and more secure jobs, stronger rights at work and “to end the public-sector pay cap that disrespects our committed public servants every day,” as well as wiping out rough sleeping and  the need for foodbanks.

“We would create a Scottish national investment bank under Scottish control with £20 billion of lending power to deliver the funds to vital local projects, infrastructure and small businesses, reviving our economy after a lost decade,” Mr Corbyn promised.

“We would ban zero-hours contracts, giving new protections to the 60,000 Scottish workers currently with no guaranteed hours.”

Mr Leonard, for his part, championed Mr Corbyn’s “principled and authentic leadership” and the party’s current manifesto, “which stood for something clear, stood for something confidently Labour.”

Giving an “absolute pledge” to work closely with Mr Corbyn, he also proclaimed that the Scottish Labour Party was starting to “be on the side of hope and optimism” once again.

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